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[164] ran along the line of his skirmishers. “Boys,” said he, “the Sixth Maine is on our right; let's go in with them.” About fifty men of the Twentieth Maine at once responded to this call, and like true soldiers rushed into the danger with the Sixth. Pressing forward with the skirmish-line went their general; the rear skirmishers scramble through the moat, they are up with the advance, General Russell orders the “charge,” and forward, with fixed bayonets, without stopping to fire a shot, dash the gallant fellows. Several shell have been thrown to stay their course, and now from four cannon belches forth a torrent of spherical case, and the air is resonant with the hum of thousands of rifle-bullets. The skirmishers leap the parapet, the right wing passes through the stronger redoubt, and wheels down to aid its left in the fort nearest the railway, leaving the Fifth Wisconsin to complete the work so well begun in the larger fort. Hand to hand they fight with triple their number. Walker, the senior captain of the Fifth Wisconsin, the scarred hero of a score of battles, has fallen, mortally wounded in the head, between the larger redoubt and the rifle-pit on its left. Gallant Captain Ordway, next on the list, of the same regiment, as he leaps upon the parapet and waves his sword, to stimulate his men, falls dead inside the fort, shot through the heart. Close by Walker lies the stalwart form of the hitherto unhurt Furlong, captain in the Sixth Maine--poor, brave, warm-hearted Furlong! Within the fort, pierced through the body, and with his brains blown out, lies Lieutenant McKinley, of the same regiment. At the foot of the hill, in the road, lies Lieutenant-Colonel Harris, with a shattered hip — Harris, than whom no better or braver officer lives. Half-way up the ascent lies Major Wheeler, of the Fifth Wisconsin, but just recovered from a previous wound, to be again struck down. At the edge of the parapet, urging on the men, Lieutenant Russell, aid-de-camp and near relative to the General, is smitten from his horse with a dangerous wound — a courageous, high-toned soldier. Close by him falls Clark, Adjutant of the Sixth Maine--rebel-hating, rebel-defying, even as he was borne from the field.

The General had already sent back for the rest of his brigade; yet during the ten minutes that perhaps passed before they could come up at the “double-quick,” sixteen out of twenty-one officers, and a hundred and twenty-three out of three hundred and fifty enlisted men, of the Sixth Maine, had fallen, and of the Fifth Wisconsin, seven officers and fifty-six men were killed and wounded. The moment is a trying one. Captains Packard and Tyler, and Lieutenant Russell, the entire staff of the General commanding the division, have all in succession been sent back to hurry up the remainder of the brigade. But how can men, encumbered with knapsack, gun, equipments, and eight days rations — a weight of sixty pounds or more — get over the ground any faster than are the Forty-ninth and One Hundred and Nineteenth coming on? The moment is a trying one, for from the rifle-pit to the left of their larger redoubt the rebels are pouring in a murderous, enfilading fire upon our men in that work, and are striving vainly to regain their lost vantage-ground; while their fellows, driven from the smaller work, and unable to cross the river, reinforce them in numbers. But the heavy tramp of swiftly coming feet is heard above the din of musketry, the General himself rides down the hill, across the moat and road, to meet his advancing column — the “double-quick” becomes a run, from the fort the Fifth Wisconsin shout for assistance, and with a wild burst Pennsylvania goes into the fight. And now all resistance at the forts is at an end. The sullen prisoners are sent to the rear. Now seven rebel battle-flags are brought up to the edge of the rifle-pit for the disheartened foe to rally around. The sight stimulates the officers of the two Pennsylvania regiments to madness, and they beg permission of General Russell to take down the flaunting rags. That officer, however, cool and self-possessed, even when danger is at its height, refuses, for the men are needed to hold the captured works, and he has already sent back message after message to the Second brigade (commanded by Colonel Emory Upton) to hurry forward two regiments to charge those rifle-pits, and he will not expose his men to an attack from foe and friend alike. Surely and swiftly, needing no reminder when he knows he is needed at the front, comes forward Upton — courageous and ambitious — with his solid columns, loading as they advance at the double-quick. They unsling their knapsacks at the foot of the hill, and with the deep Anglo-Saxon “hurrah,” the gallant One Hundred and Twenty-first New-York and Fifth Maine dash at the rifle-pits. The Fifth is on the right and the One Hundred and Twenty-first on the left of their advancing line. Dusk has now fairly shut in. “Steady, men, don't fire a shot,” rings out Upton's voice above the roar of battle, and at a charge in they go. One volley only is fired at them, and the deadly pit is theirs. Through the pit and down the hill they go to the rebel pontoon-bridge, now and for some time too hot for a safe passage. The rebels are huddled in flocks, like frightend sheep, and are captured by hundreds. The firing ceases, and the day is ours.

Thus ended one of the most daring and successful exploits of this war — an exploit which was the sole offspring of one man's brain. The hour and occasion were propitious, the troops were reliable, and General Russell seized his opportunity.

What are the results? Four guns, four caissons, filled with ammunition, five limbers, one color, five hundred prisoners, several horses, and many hundred stand of small arms, were captured by Russell's brigade alone. Two strong redoubts, the key to the rebel position at this point, were carried by a mere skirmish line. Colonel Upton's brigade, the movements of which were directed by General Russell, took some one thousand one hundred prisoners, the rebel pontoon-bridge, seven colors, and a strong

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